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Studies of Tasmanian Cetacea. Part I. (Orca gladiator, Pseudorca crassideus, Globicephalus melas)


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Scott, Herbert Hedley and Lord, Clive Errol (1919) Studies of Tasmanian Cetacea. Part I. (Orca gladiator, Pseudorca crassideus, Globicephalus melas). Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania. pp. 1-17.

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As the present paper is the outcome, in the main, of
presentations made to scientific societies by one who was
intimately connected, with the Tasmanian whaling industry,
it has been thought fit to commence with a brief historical
review of this interesting period. Also, in view of
the fact that this paper is intended to serve as an introduction
to further studies of the Cetecae which we hope to
mutuallv conduct in the future as opportunities present
themselves. The chief references in the accounts of the
early voyages relate to the pursuit of the "black whale
(an unfortunate vernacular name at best). As far as Tasmania
is concerned the industry began to assume commercial
importance about the year 1818, and at that time
it was no uncommon sight to see whale hunts in the Derwent.
As the industry increased the whales were driven
further afield, but they still continued to visit the coast at
stated intervals. The season usually lasted from May, or
June, until November, and as the men engaged in this
branch of the industry formed small stations at the coastal
bays and there awaited the whales, this method of securing
the cetaceans became known as "bay whaling”. '
There is one instance recorded of a female whale ascending
the River Derwent as far as New Norfolk, 24 miles
above Hobart, and being killed there.
Students of the Tasmanian Cetacea have for many
years been in search of some Tasmanian records relating
to the munificent osteological presentations made to several
English scientific institutions by the late Dr. W. L.
Crowther. Since the year 1902 Mr. Scott has been working
on the Tasmanian Cetacea and has been most anxious
to obtain Tasmanian records relating to the late Dr.
Crowther’s collections for the purpose of investigating the
question of the comparative anatomy of certain species.
Upon Mr. Lord's appointment as Curator of the Tasmanian
Museum a thorough overhaul of the Museum store specimens
was made with the result that a series of hitherto
undescribed specimens were brought to light. As certain
of these were undoubtedly portion of the Crowther collection
a thorough investigation was decided upon. Upon
this being made a considerable amount of interesting data
was obtained, which appeared well worthy of being placed
on record, and the following notes are therefore the result
of our observations.
Includes illustrative plates.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Royal Society of Tasmania, Van Diemens Land, VDL, Hobart Town, natural sciences, proceedings, records
Journal or Publication Title: Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Page Range: pp. 1-17
Collections: Royal Society Collection > Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Additional Information:

In 1843 the Horticultural and Botanical Society of Van Diemen's Land was founded and became the Royal Society of Van Diemen's Land for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science in 1844. In 1855 its name changed to Royal Society of Tasmania for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science. In 1911 the name was shortened to Royal Society of Tasmania.

Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2012 04:32
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2017 00:59
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